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Lynda Applegate, was born in Wichita, Kansas to Don and Emma Applegate. She was found deceased in her home, on March 13, 2023. Lynda was preceded in death by her husband, William Adams, her parents, her brothers Mel and Roger Applegate. She is survived by her oldest brother, Warren and her sister, Brenda (Jeff) Granger. She also leaves behind her two nephews, Noah and Levi Granger, besides many friends and cousins.
Lynda was the first surviving baby girl, after three sons, and a stillborn daughter. Her mother, Emma, was a magnificent seamstress, who was thrilled to finally have a daughter, so she could sew dresses and other girly clothes for a change.
However, Lynda learned the art of persuasion at an early age. One of her earliest memories was asking if she could wear pants or shorts when playing, because it was just too hard to keep up in a dress, when playing with her brothers and boy cousins. Mom agreed, as Lynda would wear dresses to church, like the other girls did.
Lynda attended Enterprise Elementary, Funston Elementary, Truesdale Junior High, and South High in Wichita, before moving with the family near Peck, and finishing the last two years of high school at Clearwater High School, in Clearwater, KS.
She started working evenings during her senior year at Kurdian Travel in Wichita, typing telex messages, which was a precursor to fax technology. As an employee fringe benefit, she was able to travel at a deep discount, which started her hobby as a world traveler. It also launched her career in international shipping. After graduating from high school, she worked for the Coleman company in Wichita, and furthered her education with evening classes at Wichita State University. However, after realizing that there was limited opportunity for career advancement in her field in the Wichita area, she made the decision to move near a coast.
A long-distance romance with Bill Adams – who later became her husband - had developed, which tipped the scales to the east coast. Lynda moved from Kansas to New Jersey - with the help of her new brother-in-law, Jeff - after Christmas in 1984, because that’s where Bill lived. Her first job back east was in the World Trade Center Tower II, working on the 77th floor.
After a long relationship, Lynda and Bill were married on November 11, 1984, on Governor’s Island. Because Bill was an officer in the Coast Guard, he had connections to use the historic chapel on the island, and family could stay at the base’s guest lodgings. Unfortunately, they knew that Bill had terminal cancer, and he passed away in her arms, on February 18, 1990.
By the time the 9-11 tragedy happened, she was working as an executive at the steamship company, Columbus Line, Inc., in Morristown, New Jersey - and thankfully - wasn’t flying out of the Newark airport like she often did. In November of 2001, she paid for her sister, brother-in-law and two nephews to fly into Newark, to visit her, because there were bargain airfares available. As part of the “homeschool field trip”, the group visited Ground Zero and saw (and smelled) the smoldering ruins. But for years, she couldn’t look at the list of the people who died, because she knew that she’d know several of them.
Even though it took Lynda 10 years, she finally received her Bachelor Degree in Psychology from Rutgers University as a Honor Graduate. Considering she worked full-time all during those 10 years, that was a major act of perseverance! She traveled to many places in Europe, South America, and even to the Philippines and the United Arab Emirates.
Later, to avoid a work location transfer, she accepted a layoff from Columbus Line. She sold her house in Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, and moved what little she could fit in her Volvo, back to Wichita.
Lynda had just returned from Dubai, to her mother’s home in Wichita, where she would stay between travels, when her mother had a major stroke in 2007. Because Lynda was a very caring person, and no longer had anything to tie her down, she volunteered to become the primary caregiver for her widowed mother, whose home had an addition that was mostly handicapped accessible. Her mom passed away more than two years later.
When Lynda’s middle brother, Mel Applegate, became ill and entered hospice, Lynda took him into her home, and cared for him to the end. That was in addition to her significant other, who was also in hospice care at her home. Approximately 6 years ago, when her oldest brother, Warren, had a stroke in Oklahoma City, she became his guardian, and eventually primary caregiver for him at her home in Wichita, until her death. She also assisted her youngest brother, Roger, as he battled with ADHD and other issues. When Roger had a stroke in June of 2020, he hoped that Lynda could also care for him at home, since with the covid restrictions, he couldn’t have any visitors. But unfortunately, she wasn’t able to handle taking care of both of her brothers, although Lynda and Warren would visit through his window, and send Roger items she thought would be helpful. Thankfully, Roger didn’t suffer long, as he passed away in August of that year. Lynda always was a very caring and loving sister and friend.
A memorial has been established with Passageways LTD https://passagewaysltd.org/ or please donate to a veterans’ charity of your choice.
More information about Passageways is available at: https://passagewaysltd.org/
Donations can be made online or by check.
Check can be made payable to: Passageways
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Friday, March 24, 2023
Starts at 3:00pm (Central time)
Cozine Memorial Group - Broadway Mortuary
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